Archive for the ‘Animals’ Category

Yesterday was gorgeous, today not so much.

feeding birdsYesterday was May Day (Labor Day here) with beautiful sunny weather Everyone was out. There were demonstrations in some parts of the city with people here and about carrying flags. We took the subway to the oldest part of Paris to walk in Les Tuileries gardens. People were out in droves, and most everything was closed. We needed to eat and forgot we could eat in the gardens…that was a mistake. We ended up in one of those “trendy” restaurants, you know the kind where a coke costs the same as a glass of wine and the food is…well “eh”. Young girls were sitting outside smoking their little lungs out while families and older people sat inside to escape. We ate appetizers with only one being worth the money, the rest were forgettable at best. The gardens were beautiful with amazing statuary, flowers blooming and perfectly green grass surrounding the paths and walkways. We marveled at the detail in the sculptures and the amount of people in the gardens. Everywhere we looked there was eye candy in all forms amazing art, flowers, a young boy feeding birds from his fingers, families with their kids on tricycles and young lovers in the grass.

One of the coolest things about yesterday was stumbling upon Shakespeare and Co. This is the oldest English language bookstore in Paris and it’s quite a joy to wander in. Books and old photos line the walls, the floors are old and well worn hardwood, a little tile here and there. A step leading to the back read, Live for Humanity, I loved that! I could have easily spent several hours perusing the shelves and wished we had found it earlier. We bought a book while there called, “The Invention of Paris: A History of Footsteps” Éric Hazan and David Fernbach. I’m looking forward to diving in.

Today was cloudy with afternoon rain. I had lunch with my friend Carol who lives here and introduced her to the restaurant we had visited a few nights before. The food was just as good and she was impressed, that was fun.  We later took the subway back to Les Tuileries, I wanted to walk around parts I hadn’t seen yesterday. I enjoyed wandering in the rain with umbrella and camera, with eyes wide open. I walked, got lost and found myself again.

Stained glass in churchI discovered a church with beautiful stained glass windows, paintings of saints, statuary and carvings. Some of the vestibules had been painted long ago and were fading with time. It was dark with very little light and I was surprised there wasn’t a sign asking people not to shoot inside like there is at Notre Dame. I would occasionally see flashes of light as people shot their pictures. I chose to shoot hand held, no flash. Thankfully there were a few places I could steady my camera as I shot.

Tomorrow? Who knows, Chateau de Versailles?

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Hey Dude... how's the nectar?

A few weeks ago, I was visiting my parents. They have a bay window where their kitchen table sits and just outside is a hummingbird feeder and a little mock orange tree. What a joy it was to sit there during each meal and watch as the hummers would fly around, eat and sit in the little orange tree to watch us. They took turns chasing each other away and once in while would eat as a group of 2 or 3.

I’ve been curious about the symbolism of hummingbirds lately so, I looked them up on the net. I found lots of links and stories but, the one that resonated with me the most is this from answers.com or wikianswers.com

In Native American culture, a hummingbird symbolizes timeless joy and the Nectar of Life. It’s a symbol for accomplishing that which seems impossible and will teach you how to find the miracle of joyful living from your own life circumstances.

The quote is from a book called, Animal-Speak: The Spiritual & Magical Powers of Creatures Great & Small, by Ted Andrews and published by Llewellyn Publications (September 1, 1996)

Personally, I’m feeling that more joy in my life can only help to counteract all the fear and hatred that seems to be resonating in the world these days. I’ve heard people say that we must be the change we want to see in the world. So, if being like a hummingbird can help me be more joyful and partake of the sweet nectar in my life then I’m all for it… I think it’s a great antidote!

Anybody want to join me?

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Baby Hummingbird

A month or so ago, a hummingbird built a nest in my garden outside my bedroom door. I watched her for several weeks as she sat in the nest. When we would walk by, she would fly away and once even challenged me… checking me out to make sure that I was okay and wasn’t going to bother the nest, I just stood there and tried as best I could to let her know I was okay.

Last week, I noticed she wasn’t there anymore, I thought she had abandoned her nest. I was feeling a little upset with this and wondered what had happened to the baby. I was afraid we might have scared the mom somehow and she refused to stay.

A couple days ago, I heard a bunch of fussing from what sounded like a bird, I couldn’t figure out what it was and it was not letting up. I went to investigate and there was the Momma hummingbird, fussing at my cat who was sitting under the nest. I thought this was odd and chased my cat away… just in case. This morning I decided to take a closer look, and there it was, the baby. Very shy and almost fully grown.

What a blessing to have such sweetness in my life. I am grateful for the joy they have brought into my life. I took this picture to share with you.

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